Hearing Evan Parker make music with Eddie Prévost, on the first of these three lengthy duets recorded in three different London boroughs, is like watching a pair of tai chi masters sparring. Parker’s tenor and Prévost’s bowed and struck percussion draw buoyancy from each other’s energy as they alternately push and yield. Together they move with feline lightness, agility and balance, even when the music’s mood is stormy and turbulent. The event was Freedom Of The City 2012; the venue, Cecil Sharp House in Camden Town, London. The character and dynamics of that occasion change continuously, but there’s never a sense that this exhilarating music is getting locked into a formal shape or falling under the shadow of its performers’ individual identities.
Two other engrossing duets on TriBorough Triptych feature pianist Sebastian Lexer: with Prévost at Old Deptford Town Hall, South London, and with Parker on soprano at Dalston’s Cafe Oto. Lexer’s playing is disciplined and rather sparing, although he clearly enjoys pianistic practices and sonorities, not least perhaps for their historical weight, an element of resistance he can work with or against, just as Parker and Prévost parry the associations clinging to their own chosen instruments. But Lexer’s piano+ set-up involves a personally developed software to analyse and adjust the acoustic output, eliciting textures and durations unexpected from a grand piano, enhancing its scope and introducing an air of instability that calls for sharp reactions. Parker and Prévost are kept in states of heightened attentiveness, and the sustained outcome is lucid and graceful music making.
Julian Cowley — The Wire October 2013